Reviewed by Gloria Peck
In his debut novel, Paul Garrison spins a gripping tale that immediately captures and holds the reader until its exciting conclusion. Michael and Sarah Stone, doctors who live aboard their 38 ft. Swan sailboat with their 11 year old daughter, answer a medical distress call near a remote atoll in the equatorial Pacific. The call is from a huge Liquid Natural Gas carrier, oddly out of place in this area of the ocean. As they sail toward the ship, they encounter another medical emergency, an ailing islander lying in his fishing canoe. Michael leaves the family boat to help the old man while Sarah and their daughter go the short distance to the ship to assist with the first medical emergency. But Michael watches in helpless horror as his boat is hauled onto the deck of the behemoth, which then steams away with his wife and daughter. Unable to save the life of the islander, and with no-one left on this tiny island to help him, he heads out to sea in the man's battered sailing canoe. The book follows his heroic struggle to recover his family while and his wife's and child's efforts to escape their captors. The kidnappers have a network of vicious aids who try to foil Michael's rescue attempts throughout the Far East. This is a story of love, perseverance, and cunning against tremendous odds.
This book is hard to put down. My husband, my daughter, and I all found that, as we read it, the chores we had intended to do faded from our minds. It was much more important to find out what was going to happen to these people. It is filled with surprises, and keeps the reader anticipating the next move.
According to the biographical information on Paul Garrison, he works with boats and ships and he spends as much time at sea as he can. His first novel shows his extensive knowledge of sailing and the sea. We would welcome more fiction from Paul Garrison's capable pen.
Gloria Peck is the editor of Northern Breezes
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